PRO-ALLIANCE PERSON: "We won. We captured Baghdad and overthrew Saddam."
PRO-SADDAM PERSON: "No you didn't. You've failed to establish control of Baghdad and looting and anarchy reign."
This is the new argument, folks, and Baghdad Bob Fisk and Tikrit Tommy Alcoverro are all over it. I've seen several writers refer to this weaselly strategy as "moving the goalposts." That is, you cross the line marked "Victory" thinking you've scored a touchdown, but they tell you "Nope. The real Victory line is twenty yards farther along." This is, uh, cheating.
What's the most repulsive is that Bob and Tommy and their pals are quite obviously playing the blatant anti-American card. Blatant anti-Americanism is when you blame the Yanks for something bad no matter what they do. F'r instance, we've been pretty loose about allowing the Baghdadies to blow off steam. Bob and Tommy therefore yell that the Americans are allowing the rabble to trash the city. However, if the Americans got tough and started shooting looters, Bob and Tommy would holler that they're murdering innocent civilians and arrogantly using overwhelming force. You can't win either way, of course, in Bob and Tommy's world.
By the way, it's being claimed around here that the tearing-down of the Saddam statue (eerily like the scene in which they tore down the statue of Stalin in Budapest) was staged by the Yanks. That isn't true and Baghdad Bob is your witness--he was right there, you can pick him out in the film of the people surrounding the statue. He saw it with his own eyes. I might add that I was watching it live on Catalan TV and they were showing the Al Jazeera feed, and Catalan TV and Al Jazeera are not normally considered to be CIA stooges.
Comment on the local attitude toward cheating: There was a soccer game last night and the stinking, putrid FC Barcelona tyrant-lovers got creamed at home 2-4 by Deportivo. They have to play in Madrid next week, and then they have to play Real Sociedad at home the week after that. If they get their asses kicked both times, which I certainly hope they do, they'll be perilously close to 18th place and the Second Division. Anyway, in the first half, Barcelona's Javier Saviola got yellow-carded for taking a dive in the area, trying to draw a penalty. That is, he was cheating and trying to steal a goal. Not very sportsmanlike, to say the least. Then, in the second half, Saviola intentionally used his forearm to bring down a high ball in the Deportivo area. That is, he was cheating again, controlling the ball illegally to try to steal another goal. He got yellow-carded again, meaning that he was kicked out of the game for receiving two yellows. The crowd was furious and the newspapers are just as mad, pointing out that he did not injure anybody. Yeah, but Saviola committed, not once but twice, absolutely blatant unsportsmanlike conduct, the kind that gets you a fifteen-yard penalty in football, directly kicked out in baseball, a technical foul in basketball, and a five-minute misconduct in hockey. He deserved to get kicked out of last night's game, and he deserves to be scorned by the fans, for intentionally cheating. Real sports heroes, like Gary Lineker, don't need to cheat. That's why we were all shocked when FC Barcelona idol Pep Guardiola tested positive for drugs last year in Italy and got suspended for four months. We never thought Pep was a cheater. Well, it sure looks like he's one now.